Browsing Tag

2015

by Jake Cole Retrospective

Tag | Sion Sono

The jarring, discordant tones present in Tag are established within just the film’s first few images, which juxtapose an ominous helicopter shot of school buses and the dissonant swell of a cello against carefree scenes of the teenage girls that reside inside, as they engage in pillow…

by Simon Abrams Retrospective

Love & Peace | Sion Sono

There’s a moment at the end of Love & Peace, an otherwise lumpy adult fairy tale, where the story threatens to come to a satisfyingly destructive head. At this point, Ryoichi (Hiroki Hasegawa), an office drone turned rock star, is confronted by Turtle, a magical kaiju-sized snapping…

by Christopher Bourne Retrospective

Shinjuku Swan | Sion Sono

Shinjuku Swan, an adaptation of Ken Wakui’s manga series, finds director Sion Sono at his slickest, glossiest, and most impersonal. Set in the bustling titular section of Tokyo, specifically the Kabukicho red-light district, the film follows the travails of the bleached blond-maned Tatsuhiko (Go…

by Kenji Fujishima Retrospective

Tokyo Tribe | Sion Sono

Though the presence of Shota Sometani, the tortured lead actor of Sion Sono’s Himizu—who’s even sporting the same gray hoodie he wore in that previous film—establishes a link between Sono’s more serious Fukushima Daiichi disaster-related films, Tokyo Tribe is resolutely in the maximalist vein of the director’s…

Blockbuster Beat by Matt Lynch Film

The Hateful Eight | Quentin Tarantino

The Hateful Eight often plays like a mean prank, and maybe that shouldn’t come as a surprise from Quentin Tarantino, who’s simultaneously one of the most powerful storytellers working and a self-indulgent loudmouth provocateur. This time he’s practically daring fans and detractors alike with a…

by Charles Lyons-Burt Film

Creed | Ryan Coogler

Ryan Coogler’s Rocky spin-off Creed begins, evocatively, in a juvenile corrections facility. A handsomely framed shot depicts a line of African-American boys filing through a gated door, before the camera pushes into the room on the other side where a fight has broken out.…

Blockbuster Beat by Matt Lynch Film

The Big Short | Adam McKay

News to absolutely nobody: in 2008 a mounting, toxic combination of sheer cluelessness and outright lawbreaking caused the US housing market to collapse, leading to a massive taxpayer-funded government bailout of several enormous financial institutions. In the wake of this, very little new legislation…

by Ty Landis Film

James White | Josh Mond

A stain of blood remains on a shower window after a night of debauchery, a son miles away from home tells his mother, “I love you” on the phone in a subtle register that suggests a history of tenderness and an immediate obligation of…

by Willow Catelyn Maclay Film

Carol | Todd Haynes

Like someone’s old love letters or the keepsake wilted flowers of a first love, Carol has the feel of a kind of attic picture that’s been sitting and collecting dust for years, an appropriate matching of form and function. Shot on grainy 16mm, director…